Barely a week old, the year 2008 already is altering the face of Beaverton with the announced retirement of long-time Police Chief Dave Bishop and the death of tireless civic activist Roy Dancer.

Bishop, who will retire in July, started as a Beaverton police officer in 1962. After leaving to work elsewhere, he returned to serve as police chief for the past 15 years. A well-known personal publicity hound, Bishop nevertheless moved the police force into a new century of law enforcement.

Dancer, who died Monday of leukemia at age 82, for years was a spark plug of citizen engagement and leadership. He was a tireless advocate for public and neighborhood safety, youth programs, parks and a positive Beaverton identity. Along the way, he accomplished many great things and while he was often recognized locally for his contributions, it is unfortunate that in the grand scheme of things the public doesn't understand that it is real people like Roy Dancer who working together best define a great community.

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